Facing La Frontera

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Mar 03 2012

Hello World


I have been thinking about this blog a lot in the past weeks, and this morning I realized that I HAD to begin blogging again. Tonight, this becomes reality as I sit on my floor, completely zoning out and unable to begin one of my 10 different school tasks. ┬áThere are too many wonderful things that happen in my day to not transcribe them for someone’s enjoyment/amusement.


Changes since I last posted include the following:

  • I will be teaching middle school English in Houston next year.
  • I have taught Saturday school for 7 of the past 9 Saturdays. and LOVED it. More on that in a bit.
  • I have found a church community!


Ok, where to begin. I have been experiencing some of that 2nd year guilt lately, you know the – did I actually make a difference; was my time well-spent; will my students continue on a college-bound path when they are no longer with me?

Luckily, I have the knowledge that my students are at a decent school and that I will continue growing as an educator in the following years, so I still have time to reach that transformational level.

However, what I have come to realize lately, is that being transformational is a community process. This year, I have gotten so much better at calling parents, speaking with students about future goals, and co-planning with other teachers. All of these factors have contributed to my feeling of a slow slope towards success in my classroom. At the end of Jan/beginning of Feb, I was stressed, and my classroom was less positive. But I’ve been working on it (and getting 8 hrs of sleep!)

While I am doing more than last year, I am feeling so much better about it. It is amazing what the difference of one year can make. The SpringBoard curriculum my school is using is truly helping my students to make great strides. When we compared their benchmark scores from last year to this year (and this year was MUCH more rigorous in preparation for STAAR), they blew the numbers out of the water. I was so proud.

I am still concerned about my lowest 4, but I have come to believe that will always be the case. I’m going to post more because there is so much goodness going on with my students. They are truly amazing, and I know I am going to want to remember all of my experiences with them in the future.


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